Have You Ever Painted a Room By Daylight Only to Be Horrified By What it Looked Like Illuminated By Artificial Light?
In the Absence of Light, There Is No Color
Light brings color to life, yet not all light (artificial or natural) showcases color in the same way. With the proliferation of Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL) it’s important to understand how their light affects the way your room feels and looks.
Who is Kelvin?
Light is measured in Kelvin (K) degrees. The degrees relate to “color temperature” and predict what hue light they’ll produce. When we think of warmth, we think of higher temperatures, but the Kelvin system works just the opposite. Warm yellow lights emit a lower K temperature while cool blue registers the highest.
CFL’s are quite versatile because the light they emit comes from three distinct Kelvin ranges producing three types of color. If you find you don’t like the light produced by one type CFL, try another with a different rating to see if that’s more pleasing.
For those desiring a CFL that will produce warm yellow light most similar to an incandescent bulb, look for ratings of 2700K to 3000K. The most neutral light comes from CFL’s with a rating of 3500K to 4100K. This clean light works beautifully in task areas such as kitchens or project/work rooms. CFL’s with a rating of 5000K to 6500K produce a cool blue light that’s great for reading.
How Do I Apply This In My Home?
With this knowledge, you can choose CFL’s to match the way your room will be utilized, or to enhance your wall paint color. For instance, select a cooler CFL to produce a yellow light that will enhance rooms painted in warm colors. Conversely, use a warmer bulb to bring more life to cool paint colors.
Many of my clients have been frustrated with how different CFL light appears from incandescent. I believe with a little forethought you just might come to appreciate the color freedom these bulbs produce.